Saturday, January 25, 2014

Trees, Trees, Trees!

Arizona is brown...........really brown.  Where we live we average 12 inches of rain a year.  But that is why we like it so much!  Eternally gorgeous blue skies, millions of stars in the incredibly clear night skies, and much fewer headaches for Rachel and me.  And the air is just clean. There is a beauty of its own here in the high desert, but sometimes we get to itching for just a little bit of green!

This picture, looking northeast towards our house, was taken during the early fall after the rains of the monsoons.  This is our "green time".

Some people love all the cactus, but I am SO GLAD that where we live is too cold for cactus to grow.  Not a fan of them and never will be.

So one of the plans that Joe and I have talked about over the years is to continually add a bit of green to our property.  Left on its own, trees will die rapidly, but if you give them water they grow really well.  Imagine that!  We decided to line our very long driveway with 30 Arizona Cypress - fast growing and drought tolerant.

What a job!  David had the job of digging the wells to retain water and the trenches for the drip system..  He kept ahead of us as we planted the trees. But hacking through calechi, a hardened sedimentary rock that's just like concrete is brutal.  The top four or five inches of soil are soft enough, but once you hit calechi, watch out!

Yes, this is the sky we got to work under over the weekend!  Absolutely gorgeous!

Isaac and Joshua had fun playing in the planters.  They were very well behaved and entertained while we worked. The small house in the background is the original house on the property.  We use it for an outbuilding.

Joe had the brilliant idea of propping up the drip line at each tree on top of a Perrier bottle. Now we can adjust the emitters depending on how much water flow we have.  Brilliant, isn't it?

Isaac, at 6 1/2, has a tremendous work ethic already.  He declares to us daily that he is "a working man"!  He is always right there ready to help with the next job!  Really amazing for being so young.

After three solid days of working on nothing but trees, the house was a wreck, dishes were piled up, and the laundry can I describe the copious amounts of dirt and filth that was in everyone's clothes?  I'm still trying to catch up!  But the trees are all in and the water system works great.  Now we get to watch them grow and enjoy a bit more green around here!


  1. You are right! Arizona has a beautify of its own...even if it is not Virginia's beauty. I'd love to see it in person. I did fly over it last month on the way home from Hawaii!

    Rachel and Courtney look as lovely a ever! I hope they do well at school. And the boys look like they all had fun planting tree. Tell all hello!

  2. Wow, it is breathtakingly beautiful there!